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Amaro 104: Continuing Education

Amaro 104: Continuing Education

Amaro 104

Bitter is the new black, and I for one am thrilled. As bartenders, chefs, and consumers continue their exploration of the bitter side of food and drink, the number of bitter liqueurs on offer is rising proportionally. For those of you familiar with Campari, Aperol, Fernet Branca and a few other amari, this article will introduce you to a nine more bitter liqueurs with which you may not be acquainted.

If you’re new to amari, you may want to go back and read the three preceding articles in this series:

Amaro 101: An Introduction to Italian Amari
Amaro 102: Beyond Basic Bitters
Amaro 103: Advanced Amari

Let’s get to it!


Calisaya Liqueur

Most amari on the market today were created over a hundred years ago—their success owing to a combination of time-tested formulas and feelings of nostalgia that can span generations. But with the popularity of amari growing, a handful of new bitter liqueurs are once again breathing life into the category. One such amaro is Calisaya, made not in Italy, but Eugene, Oregon (by an Italian).

Calisaya creator Andrea Loreto was born in Firenze, but moved to Oregon in the late 1990’s. A chef by training, he became interested in making his own amari after discovering some recipes in his collection of historic cookbooks. Andrea’s experiments quickly evolved into a passion for making amari, and Calisaya represents the delicious fruit of his labor—a recreation of a historical amaro popular in pre-prohibition cocktails.

Speaking of fruit, orange is the primary flavor we note in Calisaya, but the fruit is quickly backed up with a healthy dose of its namesake bitterant (calisaya cinchona from Peru). The color is also something to note—the clear amber color sets it apart from other amari on the shelf. There is a pronounced sweetness that tastes like a mix of cane syrup and honey, after which comes a mix of spices and floral notes that include black pepper, chamomile, lemongrass, and a touch of cinnamon.


Origin ABV% Known Ingredients Flavors Cost
Eugene , Oregon, USA 35 Cinchona Calisaya, Seville orange Seville orange, mildly bitter bark, honey, white and black pepper, chamomile blossoms, lemon grass, cinnamon $45

Buy Calisaya online

Calisaya Cocktails


1 oz Calisaya Liqueur
2 oz Rye Whiskey
2 dashes Orange Bitter
2 dashes acid phosphate (substitute lime or lemon juice)

Stir well in mixing glass with ice, strain into chilled cocktail glass and serve.

Old Waldorf Astoria Bar Book 1935 via

1½ ounces Calisaya Liqueur
1½ ounces Scotch whisky

Stir with ice in mixing glass, strain and serve with a cherry.

My Amaro by Lorenzo Inga

My Amaro

Amaro Mio or “My Amaro” by Lorenzo Inga is an amaro that I passed on for several months before purchasing. The name struck me as a bit egotistical, and because I had never heard of Lorenzo Inga, I didn’t give it much thought. But as it turns out, Lorenzo’s amaro is pretty darn tasty.

The Inga family began making grappa in 1832 in Noto, Sicily. Founder Gaetano Inga later moved to Piemonte, where he continued his craft. Over time, the company added additional products including aged grappa, limoncello, sambuca and this amaro.

My Amaro is an infusion of twenty herbs, roots and tree bark (one would assume this is cinchona). The infusion is rested for forty-five days before filtration and bottling.

My Amaro is a dark brown liquid with a non-astringent nose that evokes thoughts of caramel, coriander and bitter greens. The mildly bitter taste yields a hefty dose of melted caramel, roasted peppers, lemon zest, rhubarb, coriander and spearmint. Brilliant if not a tad sweet.


Origin ABV% Known Ingredients Flavors Cost
Piedmont, Italy 30 None caramel, coriander, bitter greens $40

Buy My Amaro online

My Amaro Cocktails

Bitter Wood Cocktail
Michael Dietsch, A Dash of Bitters

1 oz Bluecoat gin

1 oz Plymouth sloe gin

1/2 oz Amaro Mio

1 sprig lemon balm, for muddling

1 leaf lemon balm, for garnish

Measure liquid ingredients into mixing glass. Add lemon balm sprig. Muddle gently. (Lemon balm is in the mint family, and as with mint, if you over-muddle it, you’ll release unpleasant compounds into your cocktail.) Add ice and stir. Strain into a cocktail glass and add garnish, if using.

Garnish the cocktail with the additional lemon balm leaf, and then serve immediately.

The Southern Cola
Greg Best via Imbibe

1 1/2 oz Amaro Mio

3 oz. cola (such as Boylan)

1 cube of frozen lime juice

Combine all ingredients in a glass, stir and serve.

Amaro Lazzaroni

Amaro Lazzaroni

To me, Lazzaroni is synonymous with cookies. My mom would pick up tins of the famous almond cookies when in New York, and we would devour them upon arrival at home. But the Lazzaroni name is not only associated with cookies, they’re also known for creating fine liqueurs since 1851. Among those liqueurs is Amaro Lazzaroni.

If the label on this amaro looks oddly familiar, it’s no accident. The bottle bears a striking resemblance to the Braulio amaro we discussed in Amaro 102. Like Braulio, Amaro Lazzaroni contains a variety of herbs found in the Italian Alps, but the flavor profile is quite different.

The aromas from this amaro include freshly flamed crème brulee, peppermint, chamomile and bitter greens. On the palate, we find a moderately bitter taste with notes of burnt sugar, peppermint, a touch of menthol, spearmint, black pepper and coriander.


Origin ABV% Known Ingredients Flavors Cost
Saronno, Lombardia, Italy 25 None Burnt sugar and crème brulee, peppermint, chamomile, bitter greens $26

Buy Amaro Lazzaroni online

Amaro Lazzaroni Cocktails

Bitter End

Travis Fourmont via Imbibe

1 1/2 oz gin
1/2 oz Amaro Lazzaroni
1/2 oz Campari
1/2 oz burnt orange-peppercorn syrup
2 dashes Angostura bitters

Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass and stir with ice cubes. Strain into a chilled glass and garnish.

To make the burnt orange-peppercorn syrup:

1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1 Tbsp. green peppercorns, whole
3 long peppers
1 Tbsp. Szechuan peppercorns
1/2 star anise
12 allspice berries, whole
1 cup fresh orange juice
Zest of 3 oranges

In a medium saucepan, wet sugar with just enough water to cover. Bring to a boil and caramelize to a deep amber caramel (it will smoke slightly). Turn off the heat and add the spices. Swirl for about 30 seconds, then add the orange juice and zest (it will seize and then boil like mad). Stir over low heat until the caramel has unseized. Strain into a clean glass jar and keep refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.

Fernet Lazzaroni

Fernet Lazzaroni

As noted in Amaro 101, Fernet Branca is a very popular drink in the San Francisco area, and when folks say “Fernet” here, they almost certainly mean Branca. But with Fernet Branca’s popularity rising, other fernet style amari are getting a chance to find their way onto back bars. (Incidentally, when asking for a fernet in Italy, remember to pronounce fernet like “FAIR-net” rather than “fur-NET”—I learned that one the hard way.)

Like their amaro, the Fernet Lazzaroni label looked strangely familiar to me upon first glance, and after a look around the bar I determined why. The background of their label is very similar to that of Fernet Branca.

With some Fernet Lazzaroni in the glass, we find a non-astringent nose with typical fernet notes including mint, menthol, and eucalyptus. On the palate, this fernet is thin and dry, with loads of mint and menthol, followed by eucalyptus, fresh grass, mustard greens and black pepper. The limited sugar addition here is a welcome respite from some of the overly sweet amari. As I pause to reflect on the taste, I realize Fernet Lazzaroni is more akin to Santa Maria al Monte than Branca.


Origin ABV% Known Ingredients Flavors Cost
Saronno, Lombardia, Italy 40 None Mint and menthol, eucalyptus, fresh grass, mustard greens and black pepper $26

Buy Fernet Lazzaroni online

Fernet Lazzaroni Cocktails

The Black Leather Jacket
Bryan Teoh via Amanda Schuster at

1.5 oz George Dickel Tennessee Whisky
.5 oz Rye, such as Rittenhouse
.5 oz Rabarbaro Zucca Amaro
.25 oz Cruzan Black Strap Rum
1 barspoon Fernet Lazzaroni
1 barspoon Amaro Nardini
Dash Angostura Bitters
Dash Orange Bitters

Stir all ingredients in a mixing glass with cracked ice until well chilled. Strain into a chilled coupe glass. Garnish with cocktail cherry.

Fanciulli Cocktail
Albert Stevens Crockett via Michael Dietsch at Serious Eats

1 1/2 ounce bourbon or rye
3/4 ounce sweet vermouth
1/4 ounce Fernet Branca (sub Fernet Lazzaroni)

Pour the whiskey, sweet vermouth, and Fernet into a mixing glass filled with ice. Stir until outside of mixing glass is very cold to touch, about 15 seconds. Strain into a cocktail glass and serve.

Luxardo Bitter

Luxardo Bitter

From the folks who brought you the eponymous Maraschino comes another liqueur from their vast lineup. It’s called simply: Bitter. And while the color immediately made me think of Aperol, the flavors suggest it’s more along the lines of Campari. (Luxardo Bitter is far more bitter than Aperol, and not at all orangey.)

Luxardo Bitter’s aromas include bitter bark, pepper, cinnamon and a bit of grapefruit zest. On the palate we have bitter bark backed by loads of sweetness, black pepper, rhubarb, a hint of pine, and a healthy dose of cinnamon. The finish brings just a small dose of mint and thyme.

Origin ABV% Known Ingredients Flavors Cost
Torreglia, Italy 25 Sweet and bitter oranges, rhubarb, marjoram,and thyme. Gentian, black pepper, pine, rhubarb, cinnamon, thyme $26

Buy Luxardo Bitter online

Luxardo Bitter Cocktails

Esprit du Mezcalier
Rafa García Febles via Kindred Cocktails

3⁄4 oz Mezcal
3⁄4 oz Amaro, Luxardo Bitter
3⁄4 oz Grapefruit juice
3⁄4 oz Amaro, Nonino

Shake, strain, up, twist.
David Slape, PDT, via Kindred Cocktails

2 oz Rye, Rittenhouse 100
3⁄4 oz Amaro, Luxardo Bitter
3⁄4 oz Amaro, CioCiaro
Flamed orange peel
Stir, strain, one large cube in chilled rocks glass, garnish.


Amaro del Sole Vittone

Amaro del Sole Vittone

Amaro del Sole has been around for a while, but only found US distribution in the summer of 2014. I wasn’t able to find any background on this tasty amaro other than the general Vittone company story as described below.

Amaro del Sole is a sweet, moderately bitter amaro bursting with flavors including pepper, rhubarb, a hint of eucalyptus, saffron, orange and lemon peel, vanilla, and cardamom. Mixing opportunities abound with this amaro, so I’m confident we’ll begin seeing this amaro on back bars around the states in short order.

Origin ABV% Known Ingredients Flavors Cost
Lombardia, Italy 30 None Black pepper, rhubarb, hint of eucalyptus, saffron, orange and lemon peel, vanilla, cardamom $26

Buy Amaro del Sole Vittone online

Amaro del Sole Vittone Cocktails

The Towns End
JR Starkus for Carson Kitchen via

1½ ounces Hochstadter’s Slow & Low Rock and Rye
½ ounce Fernet Vittone
½ ounce Amaro del Sole
2 dashes Regans’ Orange Bitters No. 6
1 dash Angostura Aromatic Bitters

Combine in a mixing glass, add ice, stir for at least 30 seconds and strain over an ice sphere into a double Old Fashioned glass. Garnish with a fat twist of fresh orange peel.


Fernet Vittone

Fernet Vittone

If the marketing materials are to be believed, Domenico Vittone (pronounced vi-TONE-ay) created the world’s first fernet amaro back in 1842. He’s also rumored to have employed Fratelli Branca founder Bernardino Branca prior to the inception of his company, but I haven’t seen evidence of this (Branca began in 1845).

Fernet Vittone is made from a blend of forty herbs and spices infused in neutral alcohol. Vittone has a very typical fernet aroma profile, and on the palate it delivers the bitterness straight away. The mint, pepper and eucalyptus menthol notes dominate. This one definitely has a thinner mouthfeel than Branca, owing to a sugar content that is noticeably lower.

Origin ABV% Known Ingredients Flavors Cost
Lombardia, Italy 40 myrrh, rhubarb, chamomile, cardamom, aloe, and saffron Bitter cinchona, black pepper, peppermint, cardamom, eucalyptus $29

Buy Fernet Vittone online

Fernet Vittone Cocktails

Eeyore’s Requiem
Toby Maloney via Maggie Hoffman at Serious Eats

1 1/2 oz Campari
1/2 oz Tanqueray gin
1/4 oz Cynar
1/4 oz Fernet Branca (sub Fernet Vittone)
1 ounce Dolin Blanc Vermouth
15 drops orange bitters
Orange twist

Fill a mixing glass with ice, add Campari, Tanqueray, Cynar, Fernet, vermouth, and bitters. Stir until well chilled and strain into serving glass. Twist orange peel over drink to express oils and discard.

Fernet Cocktail
A classic cocktail (also called the Toronto) that first appeared in Cocktails- How to Mix Them by Robert Vermeire, in which he said “This cocktail is much appreciated by the Canadians of Toronto”. Via Martin’s New & Improved Index of Cocktails & Mixed Drinks for iOS.

1 oz Cognac or straight rye
1 ounce Fernet Branca (sub Fernet Vittone)
2 dashes gum syrup
1 dash Angostura bitters

Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass and stir with ice. Strain into a cocktail gloass and garnish with a lemon twist.
Menta Fernet Vittone

Menta Fernet Vittone

Keeping it in the family, let’s move on to Fernet Vittone’s more minty sibling, Menta Vittone. As we discovered in Amaro 103, Italians began adding mint syrup to their fernet in the 1960’s, so smart marketers took the hint and began offering mint-flavored amari.

Given that I’m not a huge fan of mint-flavored liqueurs, I didn’t expect too much from Menta Vittone. But when I opened the bottle and poured a glass, the aromas wafting up left me utterly delighted. As the smooth liquid washed over my palate, visions of boozy candy canes filled my head.

Whereas Branca drops the alcohol content and increases the sugar content, Vittone maintains the 40% alcohol and merely skews the formula to the peppermint side. It works amazingly well.


Origin ABV% Known Ingredients Flavors Cost
Lombardia, Italy 40 None Peppermint, candy cane, cane syrup, pine needles, eucalyptus $29

Buy Menta Vittone online

Menta Vittone Cocktails

Good Night, Irene
Audrey Saunders via Kindred Cocktails

1 ½ oz Bourbon, Maker’s Mark
1 ½ oz Branca Menta (sub Menta Vittone)

Stir with ice, strain over crushed ice in an Old Fashioned.

Pleasure and Pain
Misty Kalkofen via Kindred Cocktails

1 3⁄4 oz Batavia Arrack, Van Oosten
1⁄2 oz Walnut Liqueur, Nux Alpina
1⁄2 oz Branca Menta (sub Menta Vittone)
1⁄4 oz Bénédictine

Stir all ingredients with ice. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
Varnelli dell’Erborista

Varnelli Amaro dell'Erborista

As we learned in Amaro 103, the Varnelli company was founded by Girolamo Varnelli in 1868. And like the Amaro Sibilla, their dell’Erborista is an amaro that defies comparison. Arriving in a flip-topped bottle, dell’Erborista’s unique look persists once in the glass. Light brown and turbid, this amaro looks like it was just decanted and ready for filtration. The lack of filtration of course is by design, and plays a part in dell’Erborista’s flavor profile and mouthfeel, yielding a rich, smoky foundation.

The smokiness of dell’Erborista comes from the roasting of the botanicals, which include cinnamon, rhubarb and clove. The other pronounced characteristic is the ample honey used as the sole sweetener. Beyond the smoke and honey, the nose carries a pronounced toothpaste note (original Colgate, to be specific). There is also a yeasty quality and the suggestion of overcooked greens.

On the palate, dell’Erborista is simultaneously sweet and watery (it is just 21% ABV, after all) with the toothpaste quality reigning supreme. After the Colgate come mustard and collard greens, dry mustard, spearmint, caramel and a dusty, woody note. Despite these odd qualities, dell’Erborista has its fans—you’ll have to try it to see if you are among them.


Origin ABV% Known Ingredients Flavors Cost
Marche, Muccia, Italy 21 Honey, gentian, rhubarb, cinnamon, clove, orange peel, cinchona Smoke, honey, toothpaste, mustard and collard greens, dry mustard, spearmint, caramel, dust $65 (1L)

Buy Varnelli dell’Erborista online

Varnelli dell’Erborista Cocktails

Dell’Erborista Spritz
Saveur Magazine

1 oz. Amaro Dell’Erborista
4 oz. Prosecco
Grapefruit twist, for garnish

Pour Amaro Dell’Erborista into a chilled champagne flute. Top with prosecco; garnish with a grapefruit twist.

Parting Thoughts

Well, there you have it, amici: another nine amari for you to discover and explore. That takes the total number of amari covered at Inu A Kena to thirty-three! Chances are there will be more discussed here in the not-too-distant future; every time I think I’ve exhausted the local supply, another pops up on the market. Until then, back to rum reviews!


36 Comments leave one →
  1. Pete permalink
    September 17, 2014 2:43 pm

    If I were to own only one bottle of Fernet, should I stick with Branca (which I currently have) or would one of these other be better? I mostly use it in cocktails, not sipping, but I am always looking for the best ingredients.

    • Josh Miller permalink*
      September 17, 2014 2:49 pm

      Ooh, that’s a tough call, Pete. Branca is great–I certainly drink my fair share, but it’s always neat in my case. That said, I really like the Fernet Vittone. It’s may be just different enough to justify owning an additional fernet. As for including it in cocktails, it’s slightly less sweet than Branca, so that could be another plus depending on how you’re using it. If in a Hanky Panky or something, it would probably take a real booze nerd to make out the difference, though.

  2. September 18, 2014 5:02 am

    “If I were to own only one bottle of Fernet, should I stick with Branca (which I currently have) or would one of these other be better?”

    First, please accept my sincere “kudos!” for a lovely series. Such in depth examinations are what you do best! To the point…

    In reading part “104” something struck me and it was this. Its clear this category has a tremendous history and some very well established brands. Think Angostura, Benedictine, Fernet Branca, Drambuie and the like. Classic, established, understood, valued and respected.

    It’s not like all of a sudden, the world became tired of these, and demanded a whole raft of “new” bitters. Nope, it’s just good old marketing looking for a new and profitable category. They trade on the history and romance, and then just make it up. Check this thread in fifty years, and see what’s left. This marketing results in a plethora of confusing new releases, most of which will fail, or succeed only until the next hot category.

    The initial post illustrates the dilemma exactly. Confusion. Reference standards do exist, but they are few, yet often really unknown, ergo the question. In rum, not only did we identify and promote the five styles, but in doing so also set forth a way to proceed, learn and understand them.

    Your response is the best possible, but the avalanche of releases and products is so blurring and poorly established, that sensibility may not be possible. Compare to hot sauces – a fine chef I know has a collection of hundreds? What’s the best? An impossible question. The real question might better be…

    What’s are the classics, the standards that I must get to know first and well, before setting off into the maze…

  3. Craig permalink
    October 9, 2014 4:20 pm

    These posts have been really fantastic! Thanks for sharing all the info!

    • Josh Miller permalink*
      October 10, 2014 7:52 am

      Thanks, Craig!

  4. Vanessa permalink
    December 18, 2015 9:17 am

    Hi Josh – am looking for a similar amaro to a Sibona. Any advice from the expert? 🙂 thank you! -V

    • Josh Miller permalink*
      December 18, 2015 9:46 am

      Hmm, that one is pretty unique. I’ll have to line some up and see if I can find one for you.

      • Vanessa permalink
        December 19, 2015 1:28 pm

        Ok, thank you – very much appreciate it!

  5. Erik permalink
    December 22, 2015 10:20 am

    Nice posts! I had the opportunity to taste this stuff:

    Vermouth Amaro. Very tasty.

  6. Cecil permalink
    February 1, 2016 1:37 pm

    Your series is terrific, really enlightening. Are you familiar with Amaro Zarri from Villa Zarri? There is little on the internet, especially lacking are cocktail recipes.

    • Josh Miller permalink*
      February 1, 2016 2:19 pm

      Many thanks, Cecil! Have not heard of that one. Is it available in the U.S.?

    • alanhay68 permalink
      October 28, 2017 10:06 am

      Hey. Zarri is lovely! It’s pretty much bitter orange, clean and to the point. Maybe like an Italian Amer Picon if you know that. Kinda Christmassy if that makes sense. I love it.

  7. Sarah permalink
    February 17, 2016 3:10 pm

    I just filled up an online shopping cart with about twenty different amari. Fortunately (I guess), I’m not crazy or spendthrift enough to buy them all, but I’d still like to get, say, five. So, my question is, if you had to limit yourself to that number (or maybe as many as eight), which would you choose? I’d be awfully grateful for some guidance.

    • Josh Miller permalink*
      February 17, 2016 9:33 pm

      Oh wow. Starting from scratch? I’d say Fernet Branca, Montenegro, Campari, Lucano, and Nonino would be a good mix of five.

  8. Sarah permalink
    February 19, 2016 12:45 pm

    You replied! Thanks so much. And I guess my instincts are good, because I already came up with this list:

    Fernet Branca

    One extra, I know, but I wanted to try an artichoke amaro. Don’t know why I included CioCiaro, but for some reason I’m drawn to it. As for Campari, I already know I love it.

    My next big homemade project is a lemon amaro, a type that doesn’t seem to exist in a commercial version, as far as I can tell.

    Thanks again for your answer. It was very reassuring.

  9. June 23, 2016 10:56 pm

    I’m in Italy… Any recommendation for one that isn’t available in the U.S.?

    • Relberts27 permalink
      June 24, 2016 2:02 pm

      thisbirdsbrain: my favorite is L’ABRUZZESE AMARO Forte e Gentile cant get it in the US, not real prevalent in Italy.

      The Abruzzi restaurant (near the Trevi Fountain) has it and you can buy bottles from them. If you eat there, they bring several bottles of digestivi to the table and you can –literally–knock yourself out, on the house.

      • December 20, 2017 10:59 am

        amaro 33 allo zenzero is really unique, a ginger-flavored amaro that you can’t find easily in the states, i assume.

  10. chorkpop permalink
    August 21, 2016 3:54 pm

    A quick question: which is the most bitter and dry amaro? I’ve had Cynar, Campari, and Aperol (ordered in what I believe is decreasing bitterness), but the bitter bug has got me hooked (as an aside, I wonder whether Cynar 70 is more bitter than the original?).

    Also, I’m not sure how much I’d like a menthol/eucalyptus element, but if the bitterness overcomes or is complemented by it, please suggest away!

    This is a great, informative series – thank you!

    • Patricio permalink
      January 9, 2017 7:11 pm

      The most bitter amaro I’ve ever tasted is Elisir Novasalus. It is not easily available in the USA, and many find it undrinkable –it takes several tries before learning to enjoy it.

      • May 14, 2017 9:25 pm

        Yes, Elisir Novasalus is the devil in liquid form; worth trying, so you can know how far bitter can be taken.

  11. August 21, 2016 8:32 pm

    Of the amari covered in this series that I’ve tried (only about seven), I think Fernet Branca is the most bitter. Zucca Rabarbaro comes next, then Cynar.

    If you want to venture away from Italy, Jeppson’s Malört is supposed to be crazy bitter.

  12. September 7, 2016 6:33 pm

    thanks for this article and thread-I am starting what i believe will be a new chapter in my life-homemade amori-your descriptions and flavors have helped me decide where to start…just got down from the mountains and about to set sail

    • Josh Miller permalink*
      September 7, 2016 6:34 pm

      Right on, Horace! Best of luck on your quest.

  13. September 23, 2016 11:16 am

    I’ve been drinking Averna for the last 20+ years. The only other Amaro I’ve had is Ramazotti, but I think it’s just too sweet. Based on all your write-ups, I just ordered 12 different bottles of Amaro. Next round will be to move on to some of these bitters. Looking forward to broadening my horizon. Thanks for all the great info. One small suggestion (or request) would be to add some type of rating (scale of 100). It’s subjective, I know. But that’s okay. 😉

  14. November 21, 2016 9:35 pm

    What an awesome series!

  15. David permalink
    December 2, 2016 11:50 am

    I’d like to echo the complimentary comments, adding only that your writing itself is top-notch as well. I have only a couple of questions (of course!). First, just wondering what you mean when you say “astringent”. Are you going to continue the series? I’d like to see a review of the Sibona since it is one of the few I can find locally in stores. Finally, where do you find all of these ingredients to make your own amari? Once again, great job and many thanks!

    • Josh Miller permalink*
      December 4, 2016 12:51 pm

      Wow, thanks, David! Continuing the series is on my list. I have a bunch more amari I could cover, that’s for sure. Astringent as I use it refers to an obvious ethanol component, not too dissimilar to a rubbing alcohol. Sibona is my wife’s favorite amaro, so I should have that in the next installment. In terms of making amari, you can use recipes for bitters and add simple syrup. Also check out Brad Parson’s new book “Amaro”. Cheers

  16. December 2, 2016 2:11 pm

    I live on the edge of nowhere, so stores weren’t an option for me, but the internet proved to be very cooperative.

  17. Ted Crum permalink
    June 20, 2017 10:29 pm

    Thanks, Josh, for a refreshing series of articles. Heads above typical spirits writing, with no lazy reliance on sales literature (but where else will you get a cocktail recipe for an amaro that is usually drunk neat.) Great pictures too, I can taste the liqueur in this blog.

    BTW, do you remember where you got the little tumbler that is all the photos?

    • Josh Miller permalink*
      June 20, 2017 10:33 pm

      Wow, Ted, thank you so much for the kind words! As for the little tasting glasses, it’s been years, but I believe they were from Cost Plus World Market. Cheers

  18. Dustin Toshiyuki permalink
    July 5, 2017 4:27 pm

    Okay, I am ready for Amaro 105! I actually first read the 101 article years back, late 2013…I can’t even remember at this point…researching and studying as I had just started bartending at an Italian restaurant in Oakland, CA. We had an incredible array of Amaro to play with as the owner was very well connected and had even brought some from Italy that weren’t available in the US Market. I was just reminded of your FANTASTIC article because I just got back from Italy myself and had a few amaro that were not on this list. Thanks for your writing and making an incredible resource for those of us who think Amaro is one of the best things EVER. Feel free to email me if you’re curious about the Amaro’s I had while I was overseas; I am curious if you’ve tried them as well!


  19. Alex Bellin permalink
    April 10, 2020 9:16 pm

    I really enjoy reading your posts on Amarao. I have fallen in love with Fernet Branca, and recently purchased Amaro Lazzaroni. I like the Lazzaroni, but it is a little sweet for me. Any recommendations on some more dry amari?

  20. Ryan Fink permalink
    November 17, 2021 9:16 pm

    Thank you for all the great info in this series!


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